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Phoenix Boats Founder Gary Clouse Thrilled to be in Toyota Texas Bass Classic
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PAA Professional Anglers Association Phoenix Boat Founders Gary Clouse TTBC Texas Toyota Bass Classic

Phoenix Boats Founder Gary Clouse Thrilled to be in Toyota Texas Bass Classic
PAA Communications

CONROE, Texas -- Phoenix Boats founder Gary Clouse never had been to Lake Conroe until a month ago, but he’s excited about competing for the Toyota Texas Bass Classic world championship this weekend.

Clouse is one of 50 anglers fishing Oct. 28-30 for the prestigious championship. The Toyota Texas Bass Classic is the only tournament that brings together anglers from the Bass Pro Shops PAA Tournament Series, Bassmaster Elite Series and Walmart FLW Tour for a truly unified world championship event.

“It’s pretty special,” Clouse said. “This is a great group of fishermen and to be part of it is something to be proud of. I’m excited to be here and hope to catch a few fish.”
The 50 anglers in the Toyota Texas Bass Classic qualify through the final season point standings for the respective professional fishing leagues. Upon completion of the seasons, the top 15 from the Elite Series, FLW Tour and Tournament Series receive automatic invitations to the TTBC. Those who accept their invitations join the defending champion and four sponsor exemption invitees to complete the field of 50.
The tournament is taking place on Lake Conroe with the full field competing Friday and Saturday. Then the top 10 anglers will advance to compete on the final day.
Clouse visited Conroe about five weeks ago for a few days of scouting and practice. The lake was low then due to the terrible summer drought, and this weekend is about 7 feet below normal for this time of year.
“I think it’s dropped about another 12-18 inches since I was here so things look about the same,” he said. “But the drought eliminated almost all of the docks and shoreline cover. That will make things interesting this weekend, for sure. It will fish smaller than normal, but with the caliber of anglers in the field I know we’ll see some outstanding fishing and a great tournament.”
The anglers in the field have combined for at least 136 major tournament wins among 36 professionals, led by Kevin VanDam’s 20 titles and 17 for Denny Brauer. In addition, 13 anglers in the field have earned 22 Angler of the Year titles across three leagues. There are also 15 championship titles from the TTBC, Bassmaster Classic and Forrest Wood Cup. All totaled, the TTBC anglers have combined to earn more than $65 million in tournament fishing.
Clouse is running the Phoenix 921 ProXP in the TTBC, the newest model in the Phoenix lineup. The boat was introduced earlier this year and has several features Clouse said make his tournament days easier.
“The wide front deck is one of the biggest things I believe anglers will recognize as a benefit,” he said. “You’re able to move around and maneuver, with ample storage and enough space on the deck for 15 rods … which may be what I need on Conroe this weekend!”
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Saturday 29 October 2011 - 13:25:29

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